The average 200-room hotel produces about 1,300 tons of plastic waste on non-biodegradable key cards each year. In addition to that, there are extra costs for replacements, programming of the cards, and monthly fees for using RFID (Radio-Frequency Identification) technology. If hotels opted for NFC (Near Field Communication) mobile phone keys, they would have an advantage in the market by increasing safety, saving time and money, and offering exceptional customer service.
Problems Concerning RFID Technology
In today's ever-evolving world, businesses continually look for ways to modernize as problems arise. The following problems are connected to using RFID technology:
- Unreliability of Key Cards
- Security Concerns
- Ongoing Costs of RFID Technology
Key cards are easy to misplace and can be frustrating trying to find them after a day at a conference or out of the room. Many situations can happen, whether that is leaving a card locked in the room, having it fall out of one's pocket, or not remembering where it was left. Physical damages could happen to the cards in this process as well. If the card is damaged, the data will be unreadable when scanning it.
Expired cards, a wrong door lock, or cards with the wrong room number can be given out, especially if there is not a systematic arrangement implemented. Hotel staff have multiple guests checking in day-in and day-out, along with room calls, and many other procedures they have to accomplish aside from check-ins. These inconveniences can take away valuable time from guests and staff, and would overall cost the hotel more money.
As technology advances, security measures should keep up by preventing identity and property theft. Key cards can be stolen and anyone in possession of that card has access to the specific room. Cards that are not deactivated or demagnetized still have access to that hotel room, causing concern for future occupants of that room. Regarding the door locks, there are circumstances where the doors have not been properly locked and have been opened without a key card. Incorrect installation of the locks and neglected maintenance are connected to these safety concerns.
Ongoing Costs of RFID Technology
Costs of using RFID technology come full circle when all difficulties in the system are gathered. This includes the physical key cards, locks, staffing, and technology. Hotels spend thousands of dollars on key cards, this can include multiple cards depending on the number of adults in each room, nonfunctioning cards, and lost or stolen key cards. In addition, there are monthly fees charged for the use of the technology, labor maintenance, and technological upkeep. This may require some hotels to outsource to a technology company or someone who is skilled with RFID technology. These costs add up and could be prevented by switching to a technologically advanced method like the NFC Mobile keys.
The Advantage of Using NFC Mobile Keys
Modernizations of phones have made them capable of downloading event tickets, mobile banking apps, as well as a digital wallet containing credit or debit cards. These applications need access granted by the user to process any fees or scan any tickets. The way NFC mobile keys works is comparable since guests would receive the key downloaded to their phone once they are checked in.
The following points will go in-depth about the solutions this method offers.
- Convenience of Mobile Keys
- Safety Measures Explained
- Eliminating Unnecessary Costs and Plastic
Convenience of Mobile Keys
By eliminating the physical card, it will in turn eliminate any problems that would cause guests or employees to lose the card in certain places. No more having it fall out of any pockets or having it be misplaced. Today we use our phones for many things and they are important to us, so we tend to take better care and put more caution on our phones over plastic cards. Additionally, cross-functionality is embraced with NFC mobile keys, which you can use even for rental vehicles.
When someone orders an online concert ticket and downloads it to their phone, that method is how guests would download their hotel key. Fast, easy, convenient, and less time-consuming. It saves guests the hassle of dragging their luggage around without knowing which floor they may be on or they may end up waiting in line where it can feel like hours at times. Besides, who wants to run into issues like these when they could arrive at their room and get straight to relaxing and unpacking?
Safety Measures Explained
NFC technology makes it simpler to keep control of who enters premises at hotels, especially for the staff. Avoiding ID fraud should be on the top of everyone's list. NFC mobile keys help with that! They are only authorized for whoever books the hotel room, and ID verification is conducted through the PassiveBolt mobile app. No one can steal, scan or have a previous card that still opens a room from a previous reservation. Through this progression, the guests' data is stored securely. NFC technology also makes it possible for a phone with a dead battery to unlock doors. The phones would also not need to rely on hotel WiFi or cellular data.
Eliminating Unnecessary Costs and Plastic
The elimination of plastic is a topic that involves money spent and the pressure to become more eco-friendly. The high amount of plastic cards used a year equals about 6 times the weight of the Statue of Liberty, for only one hotel. The cards are not always recycled or used again; they are pitched after only one guest's use. It is easy to become desensitized to issues like this because we are surrounded by plastic every day, but if we can help, why not take the first step in doing so?
Without the use of cards comes the eventual elimination of RFID technology costs as well. Equipment costs add up, this includes the readers that could range in the thousands. Installation, tags, cards, software, and maintenance are some of the fees that are included in the entire RFID running.
Additional Points to Know About NFC Technology
Data storage is a plus when it comes to NFC technology. It has the capability to store and transmit multiple types of data. Along with those perks, NFC devices have larger storage space and can transmit more data, where RFID devices can only carry simple ID information. This is useful when you need to carry payment details, membership tickets or any information that may need to be transferred, such as hotel room keys. NFC technology attributes are best suited when used in an environment to securely transfer data over short distances, and therefore is the reason it succeeds in this market. The market for NFC is growing every day. As of 2020, about 2 billion NFC-enabled devices were around the world. NFC is poised to grow about 17.9% in the next decade.
Examples of NFC Technology
To further explain situations in which this technology is evolving, there are several instances in which NFC technology is also used in every day life. In contactless payments, a terminal that reads the chip or mobile card, on debit or credit cards transmit the data to a card processor, and process the payment if no fraud is detected or funds are sufficient. NFC is also capable of one and two-way communication. One-way communication involves an active NFC and a passive NFC device. An example includes a smartphone hovering over a card reader. Two-way communication would require two active NFC devices, such as two smartphones needing to communicate with each other. Two smartphones or a laptop and a smart phone could communicate with each other to share a WiFi password for instance.
As businesses shift the paradigm of innovation, we develop a place that reinforces technology integration to solve problems that have persisted for years. Businesses need to step forward and utilize the technology that is already starting to become more and more popular each passing year. Not only does the modern world benefit from these refinements, but our families and peers become safer, our time and money is spent valuably, and PassiveBolts' efforts are an advantage to hotels and guests everywhere.
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